Entrepreneur Mindset

The End of the Expert Era: Why Being a Jack of All Trades is the Best Thing You Can Do to Future Proof (and Disaster Proof) Your Business

Happy fathers day: tools, symbol heart,black paper mustache on wooden background. Construction concept

If someone calls you a “Jack of all trades”, I’m guessing you’re not going to jump up and do the happy dance!

Because what they’re really saying is that you’ve tried a bunch of different jobs or you’ve learned a bunch of skills but you don’t have much to show for it.

So nobody wants to be “Jack.”

It’s why personal growth gurus and success coaches talk about the value of getting good at just one thing.

And if you’re serious about building a strong reputation and being known as an expert in your field, you need to master that one thing.

That’s the smart thing to do, the prestigious thing to do and it’s definitely the thing people pay for.

And that was true for decades… maybe even centuries.

For hundreds of years we’ve valued expertise and mastery of just one skill… and so the “Guru” ruled.

But, is it still true today?

The Fine Art of Becoming Jack 

Here’s what’s becoming clear in just about every industry on the planet, especially since COVID-19…

Even if you have a niche, even if you’re really good at something, you need to stay fluid in an unpredictable world where speed, variety and flexibility rule. 

The truth is that being great at just a ONE thing could get you fired, forgotten or just plain obsolete.

But there’s a catch…

It’s not about just going out there and learning random skills in different industries and categories, it’s about understanding your core superpower and knowing how to apply it in many different ways. 

Basically, to futureproof (and disasterproof) your livelihood, you need to be a Jack of all trades with a twist!

What’s Your Core Superpower?

So, here’s how that works…

At Live Your Message, I talk about finding your superpower as an entrepreneur.

And if you’re my student or client you know that it’s not just about identifying your genius, it’s about discovering your core superpower, minus a specific context. 

Let me explain what this means. 

At first glance, you might think my superpower was related to messaging and marketing.

But when I remove the context (i.e. messaging and marketing) and get to the heart of what I really do, my core superpower is translating essence into form

This means I can take the essence of someone or something — whether that’s a creative vision, an idea, an insight, a life experience or even the essence of who someone is — and create something tangible and real from it.

Often, when I first get to know many of my clients and students at  Live Your Message, they don’t have a clear business or vision yet and I can see that they’re a bundle of raw possibility and hope.

So when I’m coaching them, I tune in to the essence of who they are — this includes their gifts and skills, what they care about, the change they want to see in the world — and I help them turn all of that into a thriving business or brand.

Or even a bestselling product or kicka$$ marketing campaign 🙂

So if my current business were to disappear today (and that’s a very real possibility or even reality for many people around the world right now), I know I can build a new, different business around my superpower because my core gift of translating essence into form can be used in so many different contexts.

For instance, I could do what I do in personal development by helping people with lifestyle design.

I know I can translate essence into form by taking a creative vision and turning it into a public art installation or stage design — and I’ve done both of those things in the past 🙂

And so, I know that as the world continues to change, I can take my core superpower and use it in so many different ways. 

If the Online World Crashes and Burns… 

My very first career transition was from filmmaker to running a branding and web design agency.

But I was too scared to make that move for a long time, because I thought the only place where I could turn essence into form was through art. 

When I discovered I could use my core superpower in business and marketing, I started to see the true value of my gifts. I realized that I could do so much more than I ever imagined… I realized that I had the keys to the kingdom. And that wasn’t something unique to me… When you tune in to your superpower, you’ll get your very own keys to the kingdom. 🙂 

So these days — despite everything that’s happening in the world right now — I’m not too worried about the future because I know I can turn essence into form in so many different ways. 

And even if the online business world crashes and burns (and I’m not saying that it’s going to happen but I’m also not saying it won’t!), I know I’ll be fine because I can take my superpower and do something else. 

In an age of Influencers, TikTok and Instagram where our attention span is measured in seconds…

At a time when the world seems to be falling apart… 

And at a time when trends come and go at lightning speed, here’s what I want you to do…

Forget about the idea of focusing on a “fixed” expertise and being great at just ONE thing…

Instead, find your core superpower so you can become a “Jack of all trades with a twist”… so you can survive and ultimately thrive in an uncertain, unpredictable world that constantly shifts and changes at breakneck speed! 

If you want to learn how to accurately identify and define your core superpower so you can take it and run with it in many different ways — both now and in the future — check out The Tony Stark Method.

It’s one of my most powerful business-building trainings and it’s a crowd favorite! I’ll show you exactly how to tune in to your core superpower so you can make money saving the world and I’ll even give you a Superpower Optimizer Call with one of my expert coaches to make sure you figure this out once and for all! Sound good?

Get the Tony Stark Method here for just $27

Over to you…

What’s one superpower you wish you had (and it doesn’t have to be about business :-))?

Go ahead and share below… I personally read and reply to each comment.

Love it? Hate it? Let me know...

  1. Kelsey Lee

    Interesting read! I do think this ties into the increase of millennial freelancers. I am an entrepreneur and have learned that my power is the ability for form trusted relationships by being memorable. So no matter what business I’m representing, I have a natural hack in being able to get things done quickly in a way that everyone is happy with. I think “big picture” which is the opposite of how most traditional companies want their employees to operate. Corporations will look down on hiring “Jacks” for specific roles. Working 6 years as an advertising executive for companies like CBS taught me this. Fortunately, I was able to find myself (and actually believe in my power) in the world of entrepreneurship where being a Jack is everything.

    Just one thing to add: I am surprised that you didn’t include the second half (and less popular half) to the saying.
    “Jack of all trades, master of none, oftentimes better than master of one”
    I feel like the second half captures the essence of what you are saying.

    Reply ·
    1. Marisa Murgatroyd

      Thanks Kelsey! I’m curious to know how you think this ties into milllenial freelancers. I think freelancing often has to do with freedom and lifestyle more than finding multiple outletse for a single core gift, though I’m sure that some enlightened freelancers approach it this way…

      I look for intrapreneurs in our company — people who can chunk up and chunk down. It’s hard for someone without that ability to function well in a dynamic company like ours.

      Just FYI, I hadn’t heard the second half of that expression before… thanks for sharing!

      Reply ·
  2. Dr, Amore

    Wow! I’ve loved all your posts as I’ve followed you through the last 7 years.
    But this post, is really, really relevant to me right now!
    All of my life I have felt as a misfit in a world of “Specialists.”
    Where we are supposed to choose only ONE: One talent, One niche, One message, One Ideal client= One Box!
    And being a Jane-of-All-Trades has always felt as if I were…”Despicable Me!”

    “Multi-Potentialites Unite!” “Multi-D Beings Shrink No More!” I rebel! I cry!
    How can we limit the infinite potentials of our being to just ONE single monochrome expression? Of course Not!
    I am in a Crusade to Be Myself & Empower Others to Fully Express the Essence of who we truly are:
    Our Soul! In all of Its’ diamond light facets. And by doing so, we can create Magick in our life and in the world!

    Thank you, Marisa, for this powerful insight and liberation!
    This is why I chose to be with YOU in this year’s Mentorship training!
    You are a Multi-faceted Gem & you help us to discover, polish & shine our many facets too. It feels sooo good!

    Reply ·
    1. Marisa Murgatroyd

      I <3 this for you Dr. Amore... now let's get down to your core superpower so we can find the thread that unifies ALL your work.

      Reply ·
  3. Mark W. Travis

    This is beautiful, Marisa. So deeply insightful. I agree completely. Yet, as a dedicated dyslexic I see it slightly differently. It seems clear to me that your superpower of turning essence into form was always in there, always within you although you were not conscious of it. It is the core of who you are and it was driving you as a filmmaker, and as a branding and web site designer. And it would (and will) keep driving you not matter what “trade” your “Jack” elects to pursue. The beauty of your journey is your personal discover of your Internal Super Power that drives your External Super Powers. So you can be a “Jack of many trades” while resting comfortably in the mastery of your own intrinsic internal Super Power.

    Reply ·
    1. Marisa Murgatroyd

      Well put Mark. I think we’re saying the same thing in different way… when I teach the superpower exercise, I frame it as the thing that’s always been with you. The thing that you’ve always done and may do it so effortlessly that you’re not even aware of it. So yes definitely!

      Reply ·
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About the Author Marisa Murgatroyd

Marisa is the founder of Live Your Message, where she turns entrepreneurs into Online Superheroes, and the creator of Start With You where she helps people just like you to discover the business they're meant to build, not just the business they can build. At 4’11 and a quarter, she’s called the shortest woman in marketing — and that doesn’t stop her from having huge ideas. She’s the “go to” brand builder for industry luminaries and heavyweights such as Justin Livingston, Callan Rush, Danny Iny, Alexis Neely and Susan Peirce Thompson. Marisa helps entrepreneurs create a business that is authentic and aligned with who they are, to empower them to turn up the dial on their “inner superhero”, so they can be the superhero to their tribe, as well as in their own lives.